According to the National Institute of Health, yoga is seen as a practice that generally has important positive effects on the mental and the physical health of a person, by engaging the existing mechanisms in positive activities which improves the health level of a person. Yoga has been exposed to a lot of studies over the years. While scientist adopted a more analytical approach, practitioners’ position from a mental health point of view was that yoga had consistently helped with the relief of stress, anxiety and had a benefic influence in the eating disorders. Working efficiently for both children and adults, yoga also is a source of strength and optimism for people suffering from cancer or AIDS, by helping them better endure the effects of these diseases.
It was almost five thousand years ago in the lands of today’s India when yoga was invented. The exercises comprised by yoga refer to assuming certain position, breathing and moving rhythmically in order to stretch different muscles of the body. The purpose of these is to bind the discipline of the mind with the one of the body and achieve peacefulness. By promoting relaxation, it helps a person to get rid or at least reduce the levels of anxiety and stress. However, the exercises of yoga may be very different, as well as the intensity with which the practitioners make them. The main focus of yoga philosophy is to achieve a high level of autonomy and health with regards to the nervous system, as well as a strong and flexible body, endowed with health as well. This means that the health of particular physical body systems is targeted as well, such as the digestive system for example and also the good functioning of the hormonal and respiration functions. By achieving all these goals, the quality of life is consistently improved which determines the personal improvement of a person.
Stress is a very powerful negative element to which, unfortunately, we are all exposed. However, yoga is a very efficient tool to be used against stress. For making yoga exercises, the practitioner is to go to a quiet place in which the silence helps him to concentrate on every move. Due to focusing on such elements, the mind starts to “forget” about disturbing events during the day to day activities and therefore the stress is slowly replaced with peace and, by getting rid of the frustration and anger, the problems seem more addressable and the person gets more confident in the success he or she would have in solving them.
Yoga works very well when practiced by people with either physical or mental illnesses or disorders. Using yoga specific exercises, coping with any condition becomes easier, rehabilitation is much more successful and, eventually, the quality of the life is improved. These findings have been also reflected in the August 2010 issue of Psychiatry. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, depression and anxiety have all been addressed by using yoga and results came up. Also, it had significant results in stabilizing and improving the moods.